Craziest Christmas Displays in Greenville, SC


It's just not Christmas without seeing wacky light displays. The best light displays must include: flashing, as many colors as possible, music, and giant mascots of some sort. Luckily, Greenville, SC, has plenty to choose from. Sure, the holidays may be stressful, but it's time to lighten up. Harness your inner Clark Griswold and head out on a Christmas light expedition to complete your holiday season.

Take part in an Upstate tradition by visiting the Roper Mountain Science Center's Holiday Lights. Through December 30, walk through the WinterWonderland light display before visiting Santa, or enjoying a performance (on selected nights). Then, follow the 1.5 mile drive through Candy Cane Lane and Santa's Sleigh. Your $10 per car ($15 on weekends) admission supports education and local non-profits. Can't beat that.

With more than 325,000 lights, Tommy and Tony have been hard at work to bring you TNT Lights at 106 Shearbrook Drive in Mauldin. They welcome you to leave your car and enjoy music and decorations throughout the entire property. In addition to the lights, you'll find more than 70 inflatables, giant trees, and a nativity. They are also serving up hot chocolate and popcorn. Santa will make an appearance each night until December 23.

The attention to detail is hard to miss at Shadrack's Christmas Wonderland at Heritage Park in Simpsonville. This drive-through self-proclaimed "orchestra of lights" is fully-synchronized with over 1600 channels directing the lights. Pay the $25 admission to the lights display, and then partake in the free events at Santa's Village. Thursday through Sundays, Santa is available for pictures. There's also camel and train rides, carolers, and hot chocolate to keep you toasty.

As you approach 230 Northbrook Way, you'll know you're in the right place. Some 65,000 flashing lights on 176 channels will greet you. The "Wizards of Winter," also know as Herbaclaus Lights, features several upbeat songs and also serves as a fundraiser for children's organizations in Greenville.

Once you're all light displayed-out, try out a couple of smaller-scale community events to keep the spirit alive. The 2016 Festival of Trees are on display until December 28 in the Hyatt Regency Downtown, Courtyard Greenville Downtown, and the Hampton Inn & Suites RiverPlace. This free event is sure to delight folks of all ages. The Community Menorah Lighting takes place in NOMA Square on December 26 at 5pm.

And for one more display to hold you over until next year, the drive to the Holiday Lights Safari in Wellford, SC, will be well worth it. Not only do you get to appreciate the holiday cheer, but you can also feel good knowing you're supporting non-profit 100-acre Hollywild Animal Park. You don't have to exit your vehicle to get in on the fun. Feed donkeys from the comfort of your car, while taking in the glorious light display. But, since you've come all this way, you might as well park and take a visit to Santa's Visit. Here you can also can feed reindeer (ahem, deer), see real-life zebras, climb up to Mrs. Claus' attic (complete with a panoramic view of the lights), or warm up at the bonfire.

Jannan Poppen is a travel consultant and freelance writer living in Greenville, SC. Follow her adventures, or let her help you plan your next adventure, at jannanpoppen.com.